The 5 reasons people give for not gathering evidence themselves
- “It’s tedious and boring.”
- “Things will sort themselves out anyway so why bother?”
- “I can just tell my story when the time comes and I’ll be believed.”
- “I don’t know how to go about it and might be wasting my time.”
- “My lawyer/the police/my adviser is going to do it for me so why waste my time?”
The 10 reasons why they should gather evidence
- Only you know exactly what’s been happening and so if you keep records around the time each event happens it will be clear in your mind and you won’t be challenged about your memory or your recollection.
- Spending time trying to remember what’s happened will be time consuming and expensive if you’re paying a lawyer or another adviser to listen to your story, write it all down and regurgitate it in the form of a statement.
- You won’t remember everything if you don’t keep records at the time. Nor will you remember the details of what you can recall well enough.
- If you do it properly you will have all the events recorded to refresh your memory when you ask for help, to know what order things happened in and you’ll know you haven’t forgotten something or misremembered an event.
- You have the whole picture rather than part of a story so it’s going to have greater force and credibility in the eyes of decision makers.
- If you use technology to keep records you can prove things like where you were and when and that a photo has not been tampered with.
- If you have gathered evidence yourself, you will save money through not having to spend so much time with the police/lawyers. You will make their work easier and your evidence clearer.
- Your chances of success are improved if you do the task well and record all the events.
- It can help easily identify the strengths and weaknesses in your case and the impact of the events on you.
- In any dispute you have to provide proof if you want to get justice. Without adequate evidence your case will fail. Don’t go for help only to find you don’t have enough evidence. For example if the police find you don’t have enough evidence for them to prove your case, or if a lawyer says it’s not a case to pursue because what you’re describing is too poorly remembered to persuade a court, then you don’t have a case.
Everybody needs evidence for anything important
Anyone who has ever been in business or involved in any important endeavour will know that records are important. They help to keep everyone on track and they are usually essential to the work that’s going on, for example keeping accounts, meeting legal responsibilities and satisfying human resources requirements. Without records you can’t show what’s been happening and if you can’t show what’s been happening there’s nothing that can be done when you end up with a problem.
It’s just as vital to keep records when something is happening to you personally that’s important to you and may lead to other people, such as a judge, your boss or a government department, making decisions about you.
Amazingly, even though it’s absolutely the standard advice of lawyers, Police or charities helping people with serious problems, very few people actually do keep records – until it’s too late! They are trusting to luck that a fair decision will be made. But lots won’t and you really don’t want to be in that group.
What records should I keep?
Here’s some excellent advice to gather evidence yourself, from people who know:
Use ONRECORD to gather evidence
Keeping records can be daunting at first. The key is to break things down into a series of straightforward, manageable tasks. This is what ONRECORD helps you do. You will soon find it’s easy to do and in no time you will build up a solid case. You will soon get used to the process and it will become second nature.